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May 27, 2013

Lisa Madras: Surgery delay yet another storm I must weather

NEW CASTLE — What makes you angry?

I'm so glad that I had this question in my arsenal, because I wasn't really sure how I was going to manage to choke out a blog this week. I told my editor as much, and he said, "Well, write angry then."

I felt I'd be doing a disservice to my readers since you're all used to hearing me tell you things that are a little more inspirational than they are honey badger. But you know what? I'm angry right now. I've never lied to you before and I'm not about to start now.

I'll try not to bore you with all the disgusting details, but I am going to tell you why I'm so angry. Last week, I found out that I can't get surgery that I need. Now, keep in mind that I wasn't looking for a boob job or liposuction, or enhancements to make me look more like a cat than a human. I need this surgery to end years of agonizing pain that ONLY the surgery can cure.

So I made the decision to buy health insurance that I couldn't really afford in the first place, only to find out after the surgery was scheduled that there existed a different benefits book than the one I was given, which outlines a year and a half waiting period due to a pre-existing condition clause.

Was it my own fault for being too naive to ask if there was a different booklet with different rules than the one I purchased the plan from? Ultimately, yes, it was. I wouldn't buy a car and think to ask if all the parts came with it, but go ahead and look "naive" up in the dictionary.There's my big, fat, smiling picture holding a copy of my first-ever health insurance plan.

But that's just the nature of the beast, and this time, the beast simply got the best of the honey badger. And in true honey badger fashion, I cried, and I wailed, and I railed. And then I rallied. I'm still not getting the surgery, but I'm working on a plan to keep myself out of pain until I do. And when that day comes, I suspect I won't be quite so angry at the beast anymore.

Because the thing about anger is that, in the end, it serves no real purpose. Sure, it can be a good way to stop thinking about the fear and the pain, but if you hold onto it for too long, it will eat away at you. It will twist away in your gut and grow even faster than the tumors and the physical pain itself.

And so I'm trying to come back from that, to lay the anger aside and move forward the best I can with the cards I've been dealt. I owe it to myself, and to my children, and to you, to try to reign the anger back in.

I promise I'll be back next week with something more positive. In the meantime, maybe let this be the lesson we learn: Some of us seem to have to weather more than our fair share of storms — but it's gotta end someday.

And if we're still standing when that day comes, just think about how strong we'll be.

 

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